It was late autumn and I was on a lunch break. I wanted something sweet and decided to go to a bakery I hadn’t visited in years. Behind it, in a depression with a tree and a bit of grass, a small kitten was heartbreakingly crying. There was so much misery in that sound. Apparently someone threw a litter there – a few died, one got rescued a few days ago, this one remained.
My heart a mess, I returned to work. With all the cats and a dog we already had, there was no way we could add another one. Not to mention destroying the hard won peace.
After work, I went back for it. He was orange, covered with fleas, with a bloated belly and he fit into my palm. Vet said he was a month old and close to dying because he could not defecate. Diagnosis: megacolon.
It was a long, smelly winter and I thought my family was gonna murder me at some points. For a year we struggled to find a diet for him. There were painful enemas, force-feeding him the oil… terrible. Two different vets suggested euthanasia. We said no. Because, in spite of it all, on his ‘good days,’ he was an incarnation of joy – an intelligent, playful and hyperactive kitten.
Now, a year and a half later, we found a regime that seems to be working. However, the food, oil, syrup… it all needs to be adjusted on a daily basis. If he ever gets lost and fed by good people, he’ll be dead within a week.
Life is amazing, and even if we haven’t won the battle for his, I wouldn’t have regretted neither time nor money spent to give him just one beautiful day more.
Story submitted by Tajana Ljubičić from Zagreb, Croatia.
Like rescue stories? Here’s another!
Tater was a discard. A Cadillac SUV pulled up on the frontage road to the state highway, tossed a 5-year-old, declawed, Marmalade Tabby cat out, and left. A maid at a local hotel saw, rescued him and took him to our no-kill shelter. They named him Tater Tot because of his markings.
An elderly lady needed a companion, and the shelter brought Tater to her assisted living home. They were very happy together; he was a spoiled prince there. But she was elderly, and passed away three years later. So he was to be returned to the shelter for re-homing. We knew the family and were aware of the situation. We offered to foster him; he was 8 now, and could be hard to place.
My elderly mom was living with us, and our cat, who was a feral rescue, was not the companion she had hoped for. Tater made himself at home, and the two cats signed a mostly non-aggression pact. Five years later, we accept that we are “failed fosters” and the antics of this boy will keep us amused for the rest of his/our lives.
Story submitted by Sz from Bellevue, Washington.
If you’re enjoying these cat tales, here’s one more…
I found my cat Buddy when I lived in my first condo. One night, I came home and parked outside, and I heard a quiet meowing. I called “kitty, kitty,” and out he came. He let me pet him, so I assumed he had been someone’s cat. Turns out he had on a collar with his street address, which happened to be at least two miles from that condo complex. I brought him some dry food and water and placed it in some bushes where he could eat and be safe.
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A few days later, he came out and meowed again, and I called to him. He came right up to me and let me pet him again. One day, I saw him run into the basement across from my building, getting in through a broken window. I thought, well, at least he has a warm, dry place to shelter. I already had two cats, Gus and Max, and didn’t think I should take in another. I took him to the Humane Society and they said they’d try to locate his owner.
I drove by the address on his collar and noticed a building permit in the window. The tenants may have been forced to move out and perhaps couldn’t take Buddy with them. I hoped they hadn’t dumped him in my complex, but I can’t imagine how he could get across several very busy downtown streets into my neighborhood. I try to think that they were taking care of him in their own way by leaving him where they did.
The Humane Society said they couldn’t locate his owners so I said I would come and get him. For nine months, he wouldn’t get close to me; he would sit in the hall near the living room and just look around. He was terrified of plastic bags, aluminum foil and anything else that rattled.
One day he appeared at the foot of the couch and jumped up on my lap. Now he would live on my lap or in my arms like a baby if I let him. He has a very sweet nature, considering what he’s been through. When I took him in, he had lost part of his tail and part of it was degloved. One of his eyes won’t constrict completely, so he may have incurred some head trauma. He is now 15, has lost quite a few teeth, and takes two medicines a day. But he’s happy and well-cared for. He and Max (my orange tabby) don’t always get along, but when they do, it’s a good day for everyone!
Story submitted by Marcia Peck from Madison, Wisconsin.
Tashi’s, Tater Tot’s, and Buddy’s stories were originally shared on The Animal Rescue Site. Share your very own rescue story here!
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